(AP) Alex Guyton and Chelsea Jones each scored 12 points to help No. 13 Purdue defeat Michigan State 67-49 on Monday night. Brittany Rayburn scored 11 points, KK Houser finished with 10 and Courtney Moses added eight points and six assists for the Boilermakers (17-3, 7-0), who won their 10th straight and remained alone atop the Big Ten standings. Jones had 10 points in the second half and finished with six rebounds. Lykendra Johnson had 17 points and 10 rebounds and Kiana Johnson added 14 points for the Spartans (12-8, 4-3), who lost their third straight after a 4-0 start in league play. Get the full stats on our scoreboard page.
Not all games are created equally. Here’s a ranking of this week’s nine Big Ten games, from 1 to 9. Plan accordingly.
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Can you see it? I can. It’s stratification in this crazy Big Ten title chase. Ohio State, Michigan State and Michigan sit atop the standings with 5-2 league marks. Right behind that trio are Wisconsin, Illinois and Purdue with three conference defeats.
After the injury to Trevor Mbakwe, I fully expected this to be somewhat of a “what if?” season for the Gophers. And that certainly appeared to be the case through four conference games, as Minnesota stumbled to a 0-4 start in the Big Ten. But Tubby Smith’s team has responded by winning three straight games, most recently in a stomping of Northwestern at The Barn. And although Minnesota had dropped some close games over its losing streak, the turnaround isn’t simply a matter of fortunate ball bounces:
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Ohio State beat Nebraska 79-45 on Saturday night. In the other games, Michigan lost at Arkansas while Michigan State used its efficient offense to power past Purdue 83-58 on Saturday in East Lansing. Michigan State (16-4) shot 60 percent from the field (30-of-50). Draymond Green picked up the Spartans with eight points, 12 rebounds, and seven assists. We put in-game updates and other links in this post.
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Michigan State was in command for most of the game against Purdue on Saturday, but late in the second half Branden Dawson threw down an impressive dunk, one of several in the game for the 6-foot-6 Spartans freshman forward. Dawson had a quality shooting game, nailing 6-of-7 shots from the field and scoring 14 points.
The third episode of “The Journey: Big Ten Basketball 2012″ airs in its regular spot on TV on Sunday night at 8 p.m. ET but it will debut Saturday night too immediately after the 8 p.m. ET men’s basketball game between Ohio State and Nebraska.
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